Delicious Toasted Coconut Banana Nut Bread Recipe

Southern Living’s Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread Recipe is the epitome of southern-style home cooking. With its moist, fluffy texture, sweet and nutty flavor, and toasted coconut cream cheese frosting, this banana nut bread recipe is an absolute crowd-pleaser. Whether you’re enjoying it as a snack or serving it at your next brunch party, this recipe will always hit the spot.

As a chef specializing in southern-style cuisine, I can attest that nothing beats a good homemade banana nut bread recipe. It’s a staple that every southerner should know how to make, and this variation takes it to the next level. By incorporating fat-free evaporated milk and reduced-fat cream cheese, this recipe offers a healthier twist while maintaining all the classic flavors we know and love.

Moreover, Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread Recipe only takes a few minutes to whip up the batter and another hour in the oven. It’s effortless yet impressive – perfect for those sudden urges to bake something delicious or for those guests who drop by unexpectedly.

So what are you waiting for? Grab your apron and preheat your oven: it’s time to dive into this mouthwatering recipe!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Southern Living's Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread
Southern Living’s Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread

Do you want to excite your taste buds with a delicious, moist and flavorful banana bread recipe that will make your mouth water? Then the Southern Living’s Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread Recipe is exactly what you need! Here’s why you’ll love this recipe:

First and foremost, this recipe utilizes ripe mashed bananas which adds natural sweetness, flavor and moistness to the bread. The addition of buttermilk also helps to enhance the flavor and texture, ensuring a soft and tender crumb in every slice.

The cream cheese and butter give this bread a richness and a tangy flavor that are perfectly balanced with the sweetness of brown sugar, granulated sugar, and pecans. Furthermore, the toasted coconut infusion in the cream cheese frosting takes the overall taste experience of this recipe to another level.

What makes this recipe even better is that it’s versatile – it can be served for breakfast or brunch as well as for dessert. It’s perfect for any situation – whether you’re hosting a get-together with friends or simply looking for an afternoon snack. Plus, it’s easy to make ahead of time and can be stored in an airtight container for up to three days.

Trust me when I say that one bite of this banana nut bread will leave you wanting more because it tastes even better the next day. So, what are you waiting for? Grab your apron, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and let’s get ready to bake Southern Living’s Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread Recipe!

Ingredient List

“Get ready for a tropical twist with our Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread.”

Let’s talk about the key ingredients you will need to whip up this delicious Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread recipe! Make sure to gather the following ingredients beforehand:

Dry Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup of whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda

Wet Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup of unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup of reduced-fat cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup of brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup of granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 3 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1/4 cup of buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract


  • 3/4 cup of chopped pecans, toasted
  • 3/4 cup of sweetened flaked coconut, toasted

Extra tip: If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, you can make a substitute by adding one tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice to one cup of milk. Let it sit for a few minutes before using it in your recipe.

The Recipe How-To

“Satisfy your sweet tooth with this decadent spin on traditional banana bread.”

Let’s dive right into the recipe! The Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread Recipe has several steps, but the end result is well worth it. This recipe yields one 9×5 loaf and takes approximately 20 minutes of preparation time and an hour to bake.

Preparing the Batter

To start, cream together 6 tbsp of softened butter, 1 (8 oz) package of reduced-fat cream cheese, 1 cup of granulated sugar, and 1/2 cup of light brown sugar, until you reach a smooth consistency.

Next, add in 2 large eggs one at a time, making sure to mix well in between additions. Then add 3 mashed bananas, 1/4 cup of fat-free evaporated milk, 1/4 cup of buttermilk along with 1 tsp of vanilla extract to the mixture. Keep on stirring until everything combines.

In another bowl, whisk together 1/2 tsp of salt, 1/2 tsp of baking soda, 1/2 tsp of baking powder, and 1 cup of all-purpose flour along with 3/4 cup of whole wheat flour.

Slowly pour in the dry ingredients into the batter until mixed well.

Adding Flavors

This is where the flavors start coming in! Fold in a generous amount of chopped pecans (or other nuts that you prefer) plus a handful of sweetened flaked coconut using a spatula. Mix it gently as it will make your bread moist with crispy outer texture.

Baking Instructions

Preheat your oven to 350°F. Grease your loaf pan with cooking or baking spray, parchment paper or vegetable shortening; whichever method you prefer. Pour the mixture into the greased loaf pan and run a spatula through the center to even out the batter.

Bake for approximately 1 hour, or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of the loaf. Once the toothpick test is passed, take your toasted coconut cream cheese banana nut bread out of the oven and allow it to cool in the pan for about 20-25 minutes.

Serving Suggestions

You can serve this cake warm or chilled with a cup of coffee or hot tea. It is also suitable for breakfast, snacking or dessert time.

Tips for Perfect Result

To ensure that your bread gains maximum flavor and moistness, let it sit overnight wrapped in a paper towel and plastic wrap before serving. Also, keep it refrigerated if not eaten on the same day to avoid spoilage.

Now that you know how to make this delicious Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread Recipe, be sure to try out some variations and make it your own!

Substitutions and Variations

“Toasting the coconut enhances the flavor of this already delicious bread.”

If you’re feeling adventurous or looking to switch up the flavors in this Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread Recipe, there are plenty of substitutions and variations you can make. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

– Instead of sweetened flaked coconut, try using unsweetened shredded coconut for a less-sweet variation.

– Swap out the pecans for other chopped nuts like walnuts, almonds or hazelnuts.

– For a healthier option, use whole-wheat flour instead of all-purpose flour. You can also try reducing the amount of sugar or using a sugar substitute like stevia or honey.

– Want to add even more flavor? Try mixing in some cinnamon, nutmeg or ginger with the dry ingredients for a spiced version of this recipe.

– If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, you can make your own by adding 1 tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice to 1 cup of milk and letting it sit for 5 minutes before using.

– For an extra tropical twist, fold in some crushed pineapple along with the mashed bananas for a Pina Colada-inspired banana bread.

– If you’re a fan of cream cheese frosting, try making a batch to spread on top of your banana bread. Simply beat together 1 package of cream cheese, 1/2 cup of powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract until smooth and creamy. Spread over cooled bread and sprinkle with toasted coconut.

With these substitutions and variations, you’ll never get bored with this classic Southern Living Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread Recipe.

Serving and Pairing

“Every bite is a perfect combination of banana, cream cheese, and crunchy nuts.”

Once you’ve baked this voluptuous bread, your home will be filled with a tantalizing aroma that will make mouths water. The Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread is best sliced while still warm and enjoyed on its own. With ingredients like sweetened flaked coconut and chopped pecans, it’s delicious enough to stand alone as the star dish.

However, if you’re feeling particularly indulgent or want to serve it for a special occasion, consider frosting it with cream cheese. Cream cheese frosting is the perfect complement to its fluffy texture and adds depth to its sweetness. To frost, mix 1 package of cream cheese (softened), ½ cup of butter (softened), 4 cups of powdered sugar, and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract until smooth. Spread it over the cooled bread and sprinkle with toasted coconut flakes for a fancy touch.

For an extra special touch, try serving this delightful bread with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top. This pairs excellently with a piping hot cup of coffee, tea or cocoa on chilly days.

If you want to experiment, switch up the bananas with pineapple tidbits or diced apples—the possibilities are endless! Another great way to switch things up is to serve it as breakfast toast or transform it into French toast by dipping thick slices in an egg-milk mixture and grilling them till golden brown.

No matter how you serve it, the Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread is guaranteed to please your taste buds and satisfy your cravings.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

“Warm up your home and your taste buds with this delightful treat.”

Once your Southern Living Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread is out of the oven and cooled, you may be wondering how best to store it for later. Fortunately, this delightful treat keeps surprisingly well in both the refrigerator and freezer.

To store your bread in the fridge, simply wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil and place it on a shelf in the back of the fridge where there’s a consistent temperature. When stored this way, it will keep for up to five days without sacrificing its moist texture or delicious flavor.

If you’re not going to eat your banana bread within five days, don’t worry! You can pop it into the freezer, where it will keep for several months if stored properly. Before freezing, make sure to wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil and place it into an airtight container to prevent freezer burn.

Thawing your frozen bread is easy: just move it from the freezer to the fridge and let it sit overnight. Alternatively, you can take a few slices out of the container and defrost them at room temperature for a few hours. Once thawed, your toasted coconut cream cheese banana nut bread taste better next day!

To reheat individual slices of banana bread, simply pop them into the microwave for 10-15 seconds or warm them up in the toaster oven for a few minutes until slightly crispy on the outside. If reheating an entire loaf, we recommend wrapping it loosely in foil and baking in a 325°F (165°C) preheated oven for around 15-20 minutes.

With these storage and reheating tips, you can enjoy a slice of Southern Living Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread whenever you like!

Tips for Perfect Results

“A warm slice of this bread is the perfect companion for your morning coffee or afternoon tea.”

To make the perfect toasted coconut cream cheese banana nut bread that will impress your guests, here are some of my top tips:

1. Use ripe bananas: The riper the better! Overripe bananas are sweeter and have a softer texture which will make your bread moist and flavorful.

2. Toast the pecans: Toasted pecans add a rich, nutty flavor to the bread. To do this, simply spread them out on a baking sheet and bake for 5-7 minutes at 350°F (180°C) until they are lightly browned.

3. Sift your flour: Sifting your flour will remove any lumps and make your bread lighter in texture.

4. Measure carefully: Measuring ingredients accurately is crucial for baking. Use measuring cups and spoons to ensure you get the right amount of each ingredient.

5. Let the bread sit overnight: To intensify the flavor and moistness of the bread, wrap it in plastic wrap or aluminum foil, let it sit overnight at room temperature or in the fridge. Serve it the next day after unwrapping.

6. Use parchment paper or a non-stick loaf pan: To prevent your bread from sticking to the pan, use parchment paper or a non-stick loaf pan to make it easier to remove once done baking.

7. Add extra coconut flakes on top: Adding more toasted coconut flakes on top of the cream cheese frosting will add a crunchier element to every bite.

8. Freeze leftover slices: If you have leftover slices, freeze them in an airtight container for a quick breakfast or snack later on as they can last up to 3 months in the freezer.


Before we conclude, let’s address some common questions that may arise when making Southern Living’s Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread Recipe. Paying attention to these FAQs can help you overcome any doubts or difficulties you may encounter. Therefore, let’s take a closer look at the most frequently asked questions about this recipe.

Why does banana bread have to sit overnight?

It’s important to exercise patience when it comes to cooling and storing freshly baked bread. After removing it from the oven, allow the bread to cool completely on a rack. Avoid slicing it right away, even though the temptation may be strong. Instead, wrap it up and store it at room temperature overnight before slicing. This delay may require some self-control, but it’s worth it for a better-textured bread. The overnight resting period will result in a more evenly moist bread, and it will be less crumbly.

How do you keep banana nut bread moist?

One great way to maintain the freshness of your homemade banana bread is by storing it in an airtight container with a paper towel. First, put a paper towel at the bottom of the container, then place the loaf on top of it. Next, add another paper towel on top of the loaf, and secure the lid. Alternatively, you can also store the banana bread in an airtight storage bag using the same method. This technique helps keep the bread moist and preserves its flavor longer.

Why is my banana bread not fluffy?

When creating banana bread, it’s important to handle the batter with care. Avoid overmixing the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients, as this will result in the development of gluten. Overstirring will make the bread tough, chewy, and not at all delicious. To ensure a soft, tender bread, stir gently until just moistened and then stop.

Why does banana bread taste better the next day?

I’ve noticed that banana breads tend to develop a more enhanced flavor and texture the day after it has been baked. This is because the ripe and juicy bananas naturally infuse more sweetness and moisture into the bread over time.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, Southern Living’s Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread Recipe is a must-try for any lover of baked goods. With its unique combination of toasted coconut, cream cheese frosting, and mashed bananas, it offers a taste that is truly in a league of its own.

Not only does this recipe taste great fresh out of the oven, but it also tastes even better the next day. To achieve optimal results, simply wrap the baked bread in a paper towel and let it sit overnight at room temperature. This will allow the flavors to fully develop, creating an even richer taste experience.

By following the tips and recommendations outlined in this article, including using high-quality ingredients like sweetened flaked coconut and fat-free evaporated milk, one can easily create a perfect loaf every time.

So why settle for ordinary banana bread when you can enjoy Southern Living’s Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread Recipe? Give it a try today and experience all of the delicious flavors that southern-style cuisine has to offer.

Southern Living's Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread

Southern Living’s Toasted Coconut Cream Cheese Banana Nut Bread Recipe

This was published in Southern Living's Feb 2008 edition. It is a re-make of the original recipe contributed by Willie Monroe from Homewood, Alabama. This version cuts down some of the fat intake and still remains pretty good. Make sure you bake this in TWO 8X4 loaf pans. If you put this in one 10X4 loaf pan it wil be too much batter and will not bake through properly.
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Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 2 loaves
Calories 584.9 kcal


  • 1 cup pecans, divided
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 (8 ounce) package reduced-fat cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 1/2 cups mashed very ripe bananas (about 4 medium sized)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

For Topping

  • 1/4 cup fat-free evaporated milk
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/4 cup sweetened flaked coconut
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • Preheat oven to 350°F Place 3/4 cup pecans in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake 12-15 minutes or until toasted and fragrant, stirring after 6 minutes. Remove and reserve 1/4 cup toasted pecans.
  • Beat butter and cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add 1 cup sugar, beating until fluffy and light. Add eggs, one at a time, beating just until blended after each addition.
  • Combine flours and next 4 ingredients; gradually add to butter mixture alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture.
  • Beat at low speed just until blended after each addition. Stir in bananas, 3/4 cup toasted pecans, and vanilla.
  • Spoon batter into 2 greased and floured 8X4 inch pans.
  • Bake at 350°F for one hour or until a long wooden toothpick inserted in center comes out clean and sides of bread pull away from pan, shielding with aluminum foil during last 15 minutes to prevent excessive browning, if necessary.
  • Meanwhile, cook 1/4 cup cup fat free evaporated milk, 2 TBSP brown sugar and 1 TBSP butter in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly, 3 to 4 minutes or until bubbly. Remove from heat. Stir in 1/4 cup sweetened flaked coconut, reserved toasted pecans and 1/2 TSP vanilla extract.
  • Remove bread from oven; immediately spread tops lightly with coconut mixture. Broil 51/2 inches from heat 2-3 minutes or until topping starts to lightly brown Cool in pans on wire racks 20 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks; cool 30 minutes before slicing.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 212gCalories: 584.9kcalCarbohydrates: 80gProtein: 13.4gFat: 25.3gSaturated Fat: 10.2gCholesterol: 89.4mgSodium: 451.4mgFiber: 5.5gSugar: 39.4g
Keyword < 4 Hours, Breads, Quick Breads
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